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Biden Hosting Kenyan President at White House

FILE - Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks in Nairobi on Sept. 29, 2021.
FILE - Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta speaks in Nairobi on Sept. 29, 2021.

U.S. President Joe Biden is welcoming his first African leader to the White House on Thursday as he hosts talks with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The White House said the meeting would include discussion of democracy and human rights issues, as well security, accelerating economic growth and addressing climate change.

Biden and Kenyatta will also talk about “the need to bring transparency and accountability to domestic and international financial systems,” the White House said.

That is expected to include revelations about the offshore holdings of Kenyatta and his family. The International Consortium of Investigative Journalists said in recent reports about the Pandora Papers that Kenyatta’s family had stowed away about $30 million in offshore wealth. There is no evidence that the Kenyatta family stole any state assets.

When asked Wednesday about the push for transparency and the Pandora Papers revelations, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Biden “has been quite vocal as you all know about the inequalities in the international financial system.”

"That doesn't mean we don't meet with people you have disagreements on," Psaki said. "We have a range of interests in working with Kenya and working with them on issues in Africa, in the region, and that will be the primary focus."

Thursday’s meeting also comes as conflict and a humanitarian crisis continue to unfold in Kenya’s neighbor, Ethiopia.

Kenyatta told reporters Tuesday at the United Nations that the warring sides in Ethiopia need to reach “a political resolution, because we do not believe that there is any military solution.”

Some information for this report came from The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse, and Reuters.

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